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Pace Prof. Teaches About Classical Art at North Castle Library

ARMONK, N.Y. – Patrons of the North Castle Public Library were treated to a lecture about the art of Benvenuto Cellini Wednesday night as part of an ongoing program called, “From the Renaissance to Raphaelites,” instructed by Pace University Professor Valerie Franco.

The 12-part series features various classical artists and Franco conducts in-depth presentations, which she has enjoyed doing for eight years now – of which three have been spent at Pace.

“Part of it is finding ways to make the connections between artists 500 years ago today – everything is a parallel,” Franco said. “It’s finding that parallel between the classic and the contemporary. Artists were really the rock stars of their time so there was that relevance for today.”

Franco also runs an ongoing film program on Friday nights at the library where patrons can watch and discuss classic movies.

“I make the comparison between film and art because film is a very visual and dynamic culture and with classic art you’re looking at stuff that was created of its time,” Franco said. “It was high art but it was also art of the people. It was showing everyday life presented to make a statement and also to satisfy the eye.”

She continued, “Just like what we see today in films and popular music, some of it makes a statement and some of it satisfies the ear or eye or soul.”

No matter how many lectures and discussions Franco conducts she said she always enjoys an enthusiastic crowd.

“It’s really fun to see what the audience comes up with,” Franco said. “We have a lot of regulars and other people come and go and they make different connections and have their own ‘ah ha’ moments where they recall different connections and come up with such great questions, which makes it interesting. Every class comes up with something different and unique.”

The program will continue Wednesday Oct. 19, at 7 p.m. with a discussion about Florentine artist IL Bronzino.

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